Fatima bint Qays: setting the standard for wise Muslim women

Fatima bint Qays: setting the standard for wise Muslim women

 

 

Fatima bint Qays was a very capable, intelligent and scholarly woman
companion of the Prophet.

Imam Muslim related that
Fatima was generous and felt satisfaction in
serving her guests. When Umar ibn Ibn al-Khattab died in 23 AH, the meeting
of the consultative committee was held in
Fatima's home because she was a
woman of understanding, shrewd judgment and good opinions. The members of
the committee thought that it would be appropriate to consult her.

[NOTE 1: Imagine that the committee to discuss who would be the next Muslim
ruler met at a woman's house, sought the advice and guidance of a woman, and
were hosted by her (as she was famous for being a good host to her guests).
What a beautiful window view into the real life of early Muslim women!]

It was said that in the year 10 AH, Abu Umar divorced
Fatima irrevocably
when he was away from her on return from a trip to
Yemen as his agent was
sent to give her some barley, but she exasperated him. Learning of this Abu
Umar replied, 'By God, you will have nothing form me!, and so the divorce.
She went to his family and asked them to provide her with lodging and
maintenance and they refused.  Later, on reccomendation of the Prophet, she
married Usama. Usama died in 54 AH and that
Fatima never remarried, instead
she lived with her brother, Dahhak ibn Qays

[NOTE 2: In the hadith it is said that when a single man is in the presence
of a single woman (who he can marry) then the third amongst them is Iblis.
What's interesting is that the Prophet told
Fatima to spend her waiting
period in the house of her cousin Ibn Umm Makhtum. And while he was a blind
man, the Prophet still advised her to do so].

[Ref: Kabbani & Bakhtair, Encyclopedia of Muhammad's Women Companions and
the Traditions They Related, p 319]

The early Muslim women played active roles in Muslim society, shame on the
'scholars' who constantly refer to 'following the example of early Muslim
women' and expect women today to live secluded in their homes - shame on
them for hiding the reality where Muslim women were active in every field of
endeavour.

 

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